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Welcome to Charming, the year is now 1892. It’s time to join us and immerse yourself in scandal and drama interlaced with magic both light and dark.

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During the Victorian era, knitting became a staple of a well-bred woman. Queen Victoria is even reported to have been a fan of knitting herself. It was during this time that knitting wasn’t just restricted to plain yarn fabrics, but changed to involve bead and lace knitting. — Fallin
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Jay Fox
68 Posts
Played by MJ
Bookkeeper at Fox & Son
32 year old Muggleborn
Bookkeeper at Fox & Son
5 ft. 8 in.
❤   Unattached
Full Name: Jacob “Jay” Fox | Suraj Dalal

Nickname(s): Only really goes by Jay / J.

Birthdate: 2nd September, 1859

Age: 32

Gender: Male

Occupation: Bookkeeper at Fox & Son

Blood Status: Muggleborn

Residence: The flat above the shop, Knockturn Alley, London.

Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw

Wand: Hawthorn, dragon heartstring, 10 1/2”, flexible | confiscated and destroyed upon his expulsion
Pine, phoenix feather, 9 3/4”, pliant | but he can’t not have a wand, can he?

Family: Jairam Dalal | Father
Bhavna Dalal | Mother
Mandip Dalal | Brother | 1857 - 1867
Jay runs on the tall side for his family, at 5’8”, but his gangly thinness has ensured he has never been much of a presence. He has brown skin and dark brown eyes; his hair is dark as well, kept short and well-kempt during his schooldays but grown out to be a little more unruly now that he rarely spends a great deal of time with other people. He has a long face and usually wears a neutral expression. His clothes are shabby but neat, and he tends to keep his head down. Jay is ambidextrous in writing, but uses his left hand for wandwork.

1859 | Born Suraj Dalal to parents of Gujurati Indian origin. The muggle family lives in London and runs a moderately successful greengrocer’s which sees them on the lower end of middle class.

1866 | Suraj and his elder brother Mandip are raised well – their parents are strict, but loving – and they expect the boys to learn their lessons, help in the shop, and become kind, hardworking, obedient and successful citizens. This is not too much to ask, and Suraj keeps his head down at the local school... only strange occurrences start disturbing their quiet life. Little things, odd things – something that seems to vanish and reappear somewhere else, that kind of thing. Suraj’s parents suppose he must be causing trouble.

1867 | Mandip has been ill, on and off, for a while, though Suraj does not pay much attention initially. But it turns out it’s tuberculosis, and Mandip quickly loses the fight against it. Jairam and Bhavna are inconsolable.

1871 | Suraj’s parents, now with only one son to care for, become more protective still of him, and he feels the pressure, always, to make them proud, to be the perfect child. A few years later, his oddities come to light more definitively, with a visit from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Suraj is a wizard. His parents adapt to this news well, see this as a whole new avenue to Suraj’s success in life, and lavish their savings upon sending him to school with all the supplies he could ever require. A full seven years, they think, they hope – and perhaps the greengrocer’s will have to be left to a cousin – because Suraj? Suraj is a wizard. He’ll do something wonderful with his life.

1871 | He is sorted into Ravenclaw, and it soon becomes clear how fitting this is. Though quiet and often a little shy in class, he has a voracious appetite for learning – and a real knack for it, too. He surprises himself sometimes, too.

1873 | Everything has been going well. His parents are invested in his progress, are so pleased with his every accomplishment, take a sincere interest in the magical world and his future in it. In third year, he takes on as many extra classes as he can: Ancient Studies and Ghoul Studies, and Arithmancy, his new favourite.

1874 | A few months into his fourth year, fifteen year old Suraj and a few other Ravenclaws – sort of close friends of his; he’s always been shy – are up late, in an abandoned classroom, playing a game. They’re testing out their magical skills, things they haven’t been taught yet. It’s a dare, of sorts, dares and spells they perform on each other. Nothing bad, it’s not supposed to be anything bad, he’s only supposed to be modifying a memory, he’s read up all about them, tried it out a few times before... But the memory charm is more powerful than he means it to be, and the Ravenclaw girl he’s cast it on is never the same – never right in the head – again. Suraj tries to explain it was an accident, of course he does, of course it was, but none of the group speak up in his defense, and there’s an upper-class girl hospitalised because of him, and the school has to do something. So.

They confiscate his wand, and after the winter holidays he doesn’t come back to school.

1875 | So much for a high-flying future as a healer or in the Ministry. So much for OWLs, so much for NEWTs. And what about his parents? What will they think of this?

Suraj does not intend to find out. The school sends a letter explaining the incident and detailing its consequences in full. He intercepts it before they can read it, and – fearing the school or the Ministry will still send a representative to ensure they understand it – forges a letter in reply, from his parents to the school. It seems to work, to settle the issue.

So all that is left is for Suraj to lie to their faces, and keep up the pretence that nothing is wrong. He spends those holidays “studying”, and in January goes “back to school”, by which he means he lurks in the magical districts of London, just around the corner from home. January to June, he intends to do this, and then he’ll visit again, stay with them a few months in summer and tell them about his time at school. And then he’ll do the same for the next few years until he’s “graduated”, and then maybe, by then, he’ll figure out a way to stay with them without disappointing them, live as a muggle, work at the...

He doesn’t have the heart. Or maybe that’s not the real problem. He’s not that good a liar.

Not to their faces, anyway. So he resolves not to go back at all. He’ll “stay with friends” for his next few summers, pretend he’s gotten a job, is doing well – will keep in touch by letter. They’ll still have a son, that way, a son who doesn’t disappoint them. They’ll still love him. They’ve already lost enough, don’t you see?

So Suraj writes letters, and lurks somewhere where people don’t see him, somewhere around Knockturn Alley, lost and increasingly hopeless. He’d try for a job, only he doesn’t have a wand, has been expelled from school, is so skittish now that he startles at his own shadow. But then there’s Mr. Fox, who takes him in when all seems lost. For a while, Suraj just helps around the shop gratefully, odd jobs, cleaning and polishing, that kind of thing...

A NEW START | And one day, eventually, he finds himself reinvented. Suraj Dalal becomes Jacob Fox. Jay, he goes by, it feels less false that way – maybe it’s a quiet reminder of his father, of the life he’s left behind, of his guilt. Not that he’s left it behind entirely. He used to watch them from the street, sometimes. Once, by chance, he saw they had a visitor, from school or the Ministry, he’s not sure – someone to check up on him, a year or two after the expulsion. He visited his parents after that, kept the visit short, could not bear to let them see him, knowing – a memory charm, this time controlled and carefully cast, wiped only what it needed to. And then life could go on. Suraj still writes to them, in secret, finding lying easier that way. Assures them he’s fine, tells them he loves them, describes a future they would have been proud of him for. He has to travel, a lot, for work. He’s far away, but doing well. He’s sorry that he hasn’t had time to visit. Sometimes he imbues the parchment with a confundus charm, just to be sure they don’t think hard enough to question it.

In the meantime, Jay has a new family, and has made some progress. He has a few skills, makes himself of use. He’s got a good head for business and numbers, an eye for detail. He’s careful, observant. A dab hand at all kinds of forgery. A powerful spellcaster, though he doesn’t look it. He could have made a Ministry Obliviator without trying; memory charms are still his forte, though he hates to use them.

He lives above the shop now and prefers the night shift, which is convenient, because he’s still shy around people. The Foxes and their friends – but particularly Simeon’s son – weren’t ever sure he fit in this life, had the balls for it, particularly with some of the more threatening customers who might venture in after midnight... but Jay is made of more steel than he seems, and has found he can hold his own when he needs to. Even so, he did feel like an outsider in the family for a long while, feeling like an easy target for mockery against the others and the way they make everything look so easy. (One of the reasons, maybe, he was pleased when Simeon took in Imogen at his suggestion. She’d been skulking around, looking as lost as he had been years ago. He'd thought she might prove a distraction or even a new target, be the new weakling in the pack. Or a valuable ally. Any will do.)

But he’s happy now, happy here. He has a family, he can’t complain. He has a roof over his head, and something to do with himself. It’s not wonderful, but it’s a life to lead. And there is work to do.

1890 | In January the shop comes into possession of some cursed Pictish artifacts, which gives them some interesting business and some trouble in equal parts. But the real trouble comes at Christmas, when Simeon Fox winds up dead in the shop, dead from a head wound.

1891 | And without Simeon running things, Jay is – struggling to keep things afloat. And he still doesn't know who killed him, still doesn't know who to trust, is still stuck in this same life Simeon made for him, and now he's not so sure he can survive it.

He was always an introvert and loner by nature, even before the incident at school. After that, he retreated even further into his shell, has never liked to be noticed. He is mild-mannered at all costs, and used to be afraid of almost everything. Not so much now: he still doesn’t seem like one for confrontation, but he has found his backbone and a stronger nerve than one might think. He is meticulous, coolly logical, and a keen observer; quietly likes to puzzle things out, bide his time, pick things apart and understand them. He’s a hard worker, loyal and diligent and clever, but an intensely private person, and doesn’t trust easily. The Foxes, at least, being what they are, can understand that.  
— Good with numbers.
— Forgery.
— Memory charms.

She was glad that Jay saw the seriousness in the situation –– though if anyone saw the seriousness in any situation, it would be Jay over Hestia any day.Hestia
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